2021 NFL Draft Preview and Predictions (Part II)

#17 Las Vegas Raiders-There’s a few ways the Raiders could go here. I am expecting them to take an offensive tackle. I think there is an excellent chance of Vera-Tucker or Christian Darrisaw being around at this juncture and think they will get one of these two.

#18 Miami Dolphins-Another pick here to be really excited about as a Dolphins fan. Both fantastic funning back options should still be on the board with Najee Harris and Travis Etienne. I don’t think you can go wrong with either, but I think the Dolphins will be cognizant of guys like Josh Jacobs and Derrick Henry’s recent success in the NFL and take Najee Harris.

#19 Washington Football Team-Most mocks I’ve seen have him falling somewhere around here, but Teven Jenkins seems to fit the bill if they do not move up to a take a quarterback. Presumably, all 5 will be gone at this point, but if one is available, they could take one here. I think they will make a move to improve their offensive line though.

#20 Chicago Bears-This is another interesting team for this year’s draft. They could certainly go in the direction of a quarterback, but again, I am expecting all of the ones worthy of a first-round pick to be gone. I think they will use this pick on Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, a linebacker who can improve their defense.

#21 Indianapolis Colts-The Colts on offense right now look pretty set. Jonathan Taylor proved last season to be a great pick and should be a problem in the backfield for years to come. They lost some defensive linemen from last season and think they will add Jaelan Phillips to their team, after a bit of a fall here due to injury concerns.

#22 Tennessee Titans-With Corey Davis on the New York Jets now, it makes sense to target a receiver here to pair with A.J. Brown. They can go with multiple receivers here, I would imagine it will either be Elijah Moore or Kadarius Toney. There could be another run of receivers late first round and I could see the Titans starting that run here.

#23 New York Jets-I am seeing a lot of mock drafts with the Jets taking Travis Etienne and I don’t understand that at all. I never trust abysmal teams drafting a running back and often view it as a wasted pick when they have so many other areas they need improvement on first. I think they will take Greg Newsome II here to help lockdown the Bills receivers as well as whatever offensive weapon Miami picks up with their first pick, as well as Devante Parker and Will Fuller.

#24 Pittsburgh Steelers-I think they would really want Harris, but will be content with Travis Etienne still being on the board and should be a great running back for years to come. They’re definitely going to need a quarterback soon too with Ben Roethlisberger in his final years but for now, Big Ben is still more than capable to lead the Steelers and they have plenty of offensive weapons to remain a force in the AFC North. Etienne or Harris will just make the Black and Gold even more fun to watch.

#25 Jacksonville Jaguars-I’ve seen him go all over the place in mock drafts from as high as early teens to late first round and that’s Michigan’s Kwity Paye. It is very much a wild card because I simply do not see teams like the Giants or Eagles drafting a lineman over offensive weapons and can see him slipping a bit and when draft position is so wide-ranging it really is anyone’s guess and there’s definitely doubters. This would be a solid pick for Jacksonville after starting the draft with Lawrence and with these two picks certainly would be heading in the right direction as a franchise.

10/12/19 MFB vs Texas A&M Alabama defensive lineman Christian Barmore (58) Photo by Robert Sutton

#26 Cleveland Browns-The Browns got everyone’s attention last year when they finally made the playoffs and also defeated rival Pittsburgh Steelers to make the Divisional Round where they lost a hard-fought game in which Patrick Mahomes got knocked out of. Cleveland’s a team that has done an excellent job drafting the last 2-3 years putting them in position to succeed in the future much to their fans’ delight after years of misery. They go with a safe, strong pick here with Christian Barmore, the defensive tackle from Alabama.

#27 Baltimore Ravens-With Orlando Brown Jr. being traded, the Ravens would like to get a offensive tackle here. I think they go with Liam Eichenberg out of Notre Dame to help protect Lamar Jackson. Baltimore is really in a weird position now. They feel like a 4-5 seed in the NBA…not as elite as the Kansas City Chiefs or even the Buffalo Bills and just seems like they’ve hit a bit of a wall and have too much tougher, better competition to get past. I don’t like how their offense is structured and don’t believe Lamar Jackson will ever win 3-4 games vs. playoff teams to win the Super Bowl. They need another receiver. To me, Mark Andrews is too important to their offense than I would like him to be and I don’t see Marquise Brown ever being an elite receiver. and Lamar needs to become more of a pocket passer for them to take a step to the elite level.

#28 New Orleans Saints-This is going to be one of the more fascinating watches in the NFL this year as the Saints look to move on from Drew Brees. They have the combination of Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston and it will be interesting to see what either can do in a full year with the Saints offense. Their offense is just fine with Michael Thomas, who should bounce back this year and then Kamara is coming off his phenomenal 2020 campaign which peaked with his 6 touchdown game on Christmas. I look for them to take a defensive player here and love the idea of Marshon Lattimore teaming up with Asante Samuel Jr. and that combination will cause problems against the good receiving corps of the Falcons and Buccaneers.

#29 Green Bay Packers-For whatever reason, probably because they are generally a pretty successful franchise and always seem to pick lower, it seems like I am unenthusiastic about Packers draft picks normally and how Aaron Rodgers can make anyone a decent receiver. They never seem to have a flashy draft pick like a Baker Mayfield or CeeDee Lamb or guys like that and always seem like ho-hum picks. They could go in a few directions here, but I think they will take Jamin Davis from Kentucky.

#30 Buffalo Bills-Two of the Bills defensive tackles will be in their mid 30’s upon season’s start, them taking Joe Tryon here will enable them to be more fresh as the season progresses and think he’s a solid late first round pick for the improving Bills.

#31 Baltimore Ravens-With their picks being so close together, they could target the offensive tackle position here instead of at 27. I think they will draft Azeez Ojulari here to improve the defense. He would have slid a bit for him to get picked here He is a bit undersized, but a skilled player who should be able to make an immediate impact on the Ravens.

#32 Tampa Bay Buccaneers-The Tampa Bay Buccaneers amazingly are going to return all 22 players on the Super Bowl winning team. They look set on offense for years to come. Obviously they will need to find a quarterback eventually, but Tom Brady has no sights on retiring for now and will likely go two more seasons at least, so the Buccaneers can go down multiple avenues. With William Gholston and Ndamukong Suh free agents at the end of this season, it makes sense draft Gregory Rosseau at defensive end from Miami to conclude the first round. It’s very nice to be a Buccaneers fan right now and with Tom Brady leading the team, another Super Bowl win could be within reach.

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